By now I hope you have read and digested the 'Where
do I Start' page. Maybe you've also made a start and contacted some of
your close relatives/family.
To further your research, the next stage is to visit the
local archives or your nearest 'Family
Archives may be sited within your local library, or may
have their own building elsewhere. You should get information about this
at the library.
However, The Family and Local History Handbook...
(click the link to purchase a copy), lists many resources, including,
registrars of Births; Marriages; and Deaths, record offices; archives and
many more. In fact it could well be the best 10 pound's worth, that you ever
spend on your hobby. It will be especially useful if your 'tree' has
spread it's roots further than your local boundary!, as it covers the
whole of the UK. It really is great value with it's 448 pages (current
When visiting any archives or library research rooms, it
is advisable to telephone first, to ensure there is a reader available, as
these are sometimes limited in number. Phone numbers and other contact
details, are in the aforementioned book. The last thing you want, is to be
turned away, after travelling many miles to a record office.
Don't forget your 'pencil'. You will not be allowed to
use a ball point pen. Or any other type of pen or marker.
You will find that the staff of the various research
places, are very helpful. And they are quite used to having newcomers
visit them. You will also discover that the same people are very
knowledgeable, so don't be afraid to ask questions.
Many records, especially old parish records, will be on
'microfiche' or 'microfilm'. If you have never used a microfiche/film
reader, don't worry as they are simple to use and the staff will
show you what to do. There may also be some 'transcribed records' in booklet
form. Please beware that these transcribed records can sometimes fall foul
of the inevitable 'human error'. So always double check your records to be
sure you have the correct one.
Another brilliant source of information these days
(apart from the Internet) is the CD ROM. Many family history societies and
some archives have CD ROMs for sale, with various records to choose from.
My own local FHS 'Doncaster & District Family History Society' have many
such CD ROMs. They are also available at the Doncaster Archives.
Another valuable source of information is to visit a
Family History Fair! or Family History Society event. Especially if there
is one near to an area where you are researching. Not only will you find
lots of local information but you will meet local people with local
knowledge, who may be able to point you in the right direction for your
research in that area. Go to this
page for information about Fairs and other events.
There is much more to learn about tracing your family
tree. I hope I've given you the urge to follow it through. Believe me
you'll love it!
Don't forget to check out our 'Research
Links' for more invaluable information.